ISG Blog

Electronic Visitor Management – Part I

In today’s world, it is more important than ever to be able to keep track of who visited, when they arrived, when they left, and who they were there to see.  Electronic visitor management systems have become very popular in recent years as an important part of an overall security plan.  The pandemic has added the need for contact tracing.

Paper Logs Don’t Really Work

Not only is there no electronic record, is the information legible and correct?  How many signed as Mickey Mouse?  Who forgot to sign out?  What do you do with the paper logs?  And, how much time would be required to look for something?  Sales people love to scan the log looking for visits from their competitors.  The list of visitors in the log is a big privacy concern that can cause a lot of bad things to occur. 

Electronic Visitor Systems Can Scan Existing IDs

Whether from a driver’s license, a state ID card or a military ID card, the information you need to capture is automatically saved in the database.  This can include information such as name, address and date of birth.  Also saved is check-in time, who they are there to see and the reason for the visit.  ID Scanners are available to read the 2D bar code on the back of most ID cards, or that use optical character recognition to scan the fields of data printed on the front of the ID.

Photo Stored in Database & on Visitor Badge

The ID card scanner can obtain the visitor’s photo from the ID card and save it in the database.  Or, you can capture a new photo with an attached web-cam.  It is a good security practice to capture and save the photo image.  Optionally, you can print the photo on the visitor badge.

“Who to See” Database

It is important to connect to or import a database of people the visitor is there to see.  It is much faster to pull “Thomas Cunningham” from a list than it is to type it.  Plus, if the names are typed, there will be no database consistency as you will have Thomas, Tom, Tommy entered. Examples of “who to see” are employees or students.

Barred List & Sex Offender Database Checking

Another key consideration is having an internal barred list.  This prevents things like people that are banned from the property, or adults who do not have child custody.  Good visitor registration systems can check a sex offender database.  This is a very important feature for K-12 schools. 

The Need for Speed

Not only do you not want to slow process, you are also making your first impression on the visitor.  You should be able check in a visitor and print a badge in 15 seconds or less.  The simple steps are scan ID card, select person to see, and hit print.

Checking In & Checking Out

In today’s security conscious world, you should not have a willy-nilly process.  You should require that visitor badges to be returned upon leaving.  This way, you have an electronic record of when the person left, and you won’t have people trying to come back with the same visitor badge. 

COVID-19 & Future Pandemics

While a variety of Driver’s License scanner options are available, some new technology includes contactless driver’s license readers, allowing visitors and guests to simply present their ID to the scanner without interfacing with an employee or touching any peripheral devices.  This is especially important in today’s world, as facilities look to improve visitor tracking but minimize personal contact. 

You may want to have the visitor label printer on the counter and facing the guest, so they can remove it themselves.  The visitor lanyard and backer can be also placed so the guest can pick it up themselves. 

There are Temperature Tracking integrations available to validate and track the temperature information.

The electronic visitor system can be invaluable for contact tracking.  You can generate reports of who visited, who they saw, when they arrived and left.

Come back next week to learn more things you need to consider before purchasing an electronic visitor management solution.

The ISG is Here to Help

Talk to your local ISG expert about your specific electronic visitor management needs and how they pair with the solutions we offer. From door access control to mobile credentials, employee IDs to video surveillance, the ISG has the solutions you can use to protect everything and everyone important to your organization.

Contact us today!


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